EnneagramThe Enneagram is a tradition of spiritual psychology that, amongst many other applications, indicates 9 distinct yet dynamically interelated human personality types. Its diametric figure an 'enneagram' or 'enneagon' consists of a circle enclosing an equilateral triangle and an irregular hexagon that meet in nine points around the circle's circumference.
Some Enneagram teachers claim that the system is based on ancient principles, especially those from Sufi mysticism. Its first established form was created (or brought to Europe) by a Greek-Armenian teacher G. I. Gurdjieff. It is specualated by some that the Enneagram figure (possibly a variant of Chaldean seal) is from the times of Pythagoras.
Its first known use for personality typing comes from the work of the Bolivian teacher Oscar Ichazo and his system of 'Protoanalysis'. Ichazo and his students - firstly in Arica, Chile and later in the United States - established the Arica Institute.
Most current Enneagram teaching has derived directly or indirectly from the Chilean psychiatrist Claudio Naranjo who first learned it from Ichazo.
Main core types have many different monikers. Types are:
- 1 – Perfectionist, Reformer, Critic
- 2 – Helper, Caregiver, Advisor
- 3 – Achiever, Performer, Motivator
- 4 – Romantic, Individualist
- 5 – Observer, Thinker, Investigator
- 6 – Loyalist, Trooper, Devil's Advocate
- 7 – Adventurer, Epicure, Optimist
- 8 – Challenger, Leader, Advocate
- 9 – Mediator, Abdicator, Peacemaker
These types overlap each other both in the circle of the enneagon (type 1s may have personality traits from types 9 and 2, for example), forming "wings" and also following the lines of enneagon to stress points and security points. Every type has three main variants based on Sexual, Social, and Self Preservational instincts.
Ichazo also compares the alleged flaws of personality types to Seven Mortal sins, except that he adds deceit and fear to the list.
Use of the Enneagram has brought criticism from various quarters, including comparisons to astrology. Its esoteric origins have both brought out ideas of spiritual growth and spread both popularity and alarm in religious, especially in certain Roman Catholic circles.